Forest Floor

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Forest Floor

 

a layer of organic residues on the soil surface of a forest; humus. The forest floor is formed by the decomposition of organic matter (leaves, coniferous needles, small twigs, and fallen bark, for example). It merges gradually with the humus-accumulative (sod) layer, but sometimes it lies directly on the podzol horizon of the soil.

The forest floor greatly affects processes in the soil and forest development because plant nutrients are concentrated in it and because the humus formed acts on the soil layers below it. It also prevents soil erosion and mechanical compaction. The water and air regime and forest-growing properties depend on the forest floor. A variety of organisms inhabit the forest floor: insects, including species harmful to crops and stands, protozoans, fungi, and bacteria.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
The forest floor was a rosy carpet of autumn fronds.
As I stand over the insect crawling amid the pine needles on the forest floor, and endeavoring to conceal itself from my sight, and ask myself why it will cherish those humble thoughts, and bide its head from me who might, perhaps, be its benefactor, and impart to its race some cheering information, I am reminded of the greater Benefactor and Intelligence that stands over me the human insect.
In the rush of his retreat down the canyon slope, he had plunged into a bunch of shorthorn steers, who, far more startled than he, had rolled him on the forest floor, trampled over him in their panic, and smashed his rifle under their hoofs.
Forest floor net N mineralization was poorly correlated with soil N capital and N turnover rates and was appreciable only at two sites where forest floor C:N ratios were [less than]35.
For instance, to reach the beach from the main public block, guests descend a monumental staircase to the forest floor and follow a pathway among the trees.
Nevertheless, it is an eerie sensation watching fish leaping from the water to snatch insects or fruit from tree limbs that, before the flooding, would be 50 feet above the forest floor.
While pine and fir face the approaching winter in somber cloaks of green, the larch anticipates the season with needles that blaze to a glory of yellows and golds before sprinkling to the forest floor. This behavior is common in broad-leafed trees such as aspen and black oak, but a deciduous conifer is almost a contradiction in terms.
Soil absorbs and stores carbon from debris, like leaves and branches, that falls to the forest floor. The team found that heating soil by 10 to 20 degrees caused it to release carbon dioxide up to eight times faster than normal.
the experts who had to sup their way through thousands on wines to formulate their highly respected views said the Caron Rose "Evolved forest floor, pinched red fruits and quince aromas.
Toby said: "I really enjoyed the visit when we made bows and had a go at archery." Hannah said: "I really enjoyed the treasure hunt and making maps on the forest floor".
New and more nearly complete specimens of mammalian species and their close kin reveal that they had expanded into ecological niches beyond the forest floor. While some turned to burrowing and others became predators, one close relative of mammals took to the water beaver-style.
The movement is headed by Jim Cummings, Lang Elliot, Bernie Krause and Hildegard Westerkamp, best known for her composition "Beneath the Forest Floor."